I first met Laura Day (left) nine years ago, when I was still a fledgling interviewer and she was promoting her first book, Practical Intuition. We’ve kept in intermittent touch since then, so I was pleased by the opportunity to attend a luncheon celebrating the forthcoming publication of her latest self-help guide, Welcome to Your Crisis. A gaggle of newspaper reporters, magazine editors, television producers, and one blogger met up yesterday afternoon at the Chelsea restaurant Bette—where Day said she’s a regular lunch guest, because it’s the furthest downtown she can get her uptown friends to come and vice versa (also, she swears the cherry pot pie is delicious). Much of the conversation at our table revolved around Day’s ideas about four types of responses to crisis, and which type each of us fell into. Day freely admitted to being an “anxiety type,” while the party’s co-host, Uma Thurman, quipped from the next table, “I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a denial type.” (A trait she shared with her fellow host, literary agent Jennifer Rudolph Walsh, as I’d discover when Walsh joined our table for dessert.) Day also poked fun at her reputation as a bestselling writer, noting that when her own crisis hit, she made all the same mistakes as everyone else. “Self-help authors write these books because their lives are such a mess,” she said. “We devote our lives to finding the answers.”
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